The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
Opioids for Pain
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Use of nonopioid drugs for pain was reviewed in a previous issue. For many types of moderate to severe acute pain, acetaminophen and/or an NSAID may be as effective as an opioid. Immediate-release formulations of full opioid agonists should generally be used for acute pain that is severe enough to require treatment with an opioid. Use of extended-release or long-acting opioid formulations initially and treatment durations >1 week have been associated with an increased risk of unintended long-term use. ... more
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